Books

November Book Picks

Our partners at Vroman's Bookstore in Pasadena recommend these books by California authors and on California subjects. The reviews are by Vroman's (well-read) staff members.
“THE PROPOSAL” BY JASMINE GUILLORY

The jacket copy categorizes it as “contemporary romance,” but Guillory’s delightful new book might be better described as a “feminist rom-com.” (See image above.) This smart, funny novel kicks off with a Dodgers game scoreboard proposal gone wrong and shifts smoothly into a charming look at modern-day dating life, set in Los Angeles.

“THE LAWS OF HUMAN NATURE” BY ROBERT GREENE

The Los Angeles author of bestselling books “The 48 Laws of Power” and “The Art of Seduction” returns with a tome on the fundamental truths of human nature. Weighing in at 600 pages, Greene’s newest book, like his others, draws from his study of history, philosophy, and psychology, to guide readers to personal success.

“THERE WILL BE NO MIRACLES HERE: A MEMOIR” BY CASEY GERALD

Los Angeles author Gerald’s résumé speaks to the American dream: growing up poor and black in a troubled family from Oak Cliff, Dallas, Gerald grows up to play football for Yale, intern at Lehman Brothers, and graduate from Harvard’s MBA program. But Gerald is not a man defined only by his business accomplishments (co-founder and CEO of MBAs Across America, TED speaker, and one of Fast Company’s “Most Creative People in Business”) and this is not a book defined by traditional categories. “There Will Be No Miracles” is both a stunningly original memoir and an urgent discussion of race and class in America spoken through politics, philosophy, spirituality, and one man’s life.

“THE MAMBA MENTALITY: HOW I PLAY” BY KOBE BRYANT

Former Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant’s intimate book about the process behind his playing will satisfy players of any game, sports, business, or otherwise. With an introduction by beloved Lakers coach Phil Jackson and photographs by Hall of Fame photographer Andrew D. Bernstein, Bryant’s memoir offers an intimate look inside the mind of a world-class performer.

“IMPOSSIBLE OWLS: ESSAYS” BY BRIAN PHILLIPS

Los Angeles journalist Brian Phillips’ debut essay collection is an entertaining exploration of the wonders of the world. Hilarious and insightful, Phillips acts as a guide, introducing readers to strange places and stranger people, reminding us along the way of how connected we are to all of them.